1 Corinthians 3:1

Brothers and sisters, I could not address you as people who live by the Spirit but as people who are still worldly—mere infants in Christ.

The City of Corinth was bustling with commerce, had an outdoor theater that could seat 20,000 people a diverse population, but also a temple of 1,000 prostitutes and abundant taverns on the south side of the marketplace. Can you picture it, this place of affluence but also of darkness? Paul was preaching in the city of Corinth to believers who had not grown in their faith though they had believed for years. The church had divisions, aberrant beliefs, and practices. The consequence: stunted spiritual growth and idolatry. How does the church in Corinth compare with churches in our country today?

I remember when our sons eventually weaned from milk to baby cereal, and then pureed vegetables and fruit. Nothing solid until they could chew and digest it. Can you imagine feeding an infant a big hunk of steak? I remember the first few spoonfuls of baby food being spit out because they didn’t even know how to swallow it from a spoon. It was a little frustrating (and messy) until they got the hang of it, and most parents persevere until they do. Paul was concerned for the believers in Corinth and persevered in teaching them how to grow and mature in their spiritual walk.

How does a person go from spiritual immaturity to maturity? What is your spiritual calorie intake? What is your steady diet, spiritually speaking? Are you spending more time or at least an equal amount working on your spiritual self as your physical self? The choices we make spiritually determine how long we stay infants, adolescents, and teenagers in our spiritual growth. I know I was stuck in adolescence and teenagerhood much longer than I could have been because I was ignorant of the importance of spiritual growth and how to achieve it. Because of that immaturity, I made unwise choices and decisions and reaped the unpleasant consequences.

Spiritual growth occurs when the believer is transformed by the renewing of his/her mind. And the renewing of your mind happens at the rate by which we learn the Scripture and obey it. Scripture states of itself in Hebrews 4:12: The word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Powerful, yes?

Even mature Christians have moments when emotions get the best of them, but emotions out of control and ruling your life consistently isn’t evidence of a Spirit-filled life but rather an out-of-control infant. Spiritually mature individuals, because of their regular diet of the Word, can discern truth from error. They see life through the lens of the Book penned by the Author of life. Regardless of your level of spiritual maturity, there will always be areas of your life God needs to work in. Will you pray Psalm 25:5 (NLT) with me:

Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All-day long I put my hope in you.

Deb Hill
Executive Assistant

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